Below, read about singer-songwriter Krissy Krissy’s life according to a press release followed by our interview.
After first being discovered at a local Karaoke bar, California native/Brooklyn raised Krissy Krissy has been making tremendous strides in a very short period of time. From garnering a quarter million views in just two days for her debut single “Dream,” (from her acclaimed debut extended play “Above All”), to a top record on I Heart Radio, to an MTV Buzzworthy Feature, to a #1 spot on MTVU “Freshman Pick of The Week,” the talented Brooklyn soul singer continues to break new ground with her sophomore single “Suspicious”.
Examining heartbreak and fortitude from a plethora of sides of the prism of life, “Above All” (which she dedicated to her father who passed shortly after its release) is a powerful and connective blend that brings a spark of light for the Pop/Rock genre.
Here is the video for “Dream:”
Growing up in a Pentecostal church, Krissy’s musical influence spawned from the likes of Fred Hammond, Kirk Franklin, Aretha Franklin and more. From a young age, Krissy knew singing was her true passion and she’d often sing cover songs from her her music idols which resulted in her receiving the nickname “Frederica” among her church community.
However, Krissy’s world took a transformation shift. At age 15, Krissy Krissy was kicked out of choir and church for kissing a girl. Devastated, confused, and trying to sort through the growing pains of youth proved painful for the young singer. At age 17, she moved out of her family-of-8’s (she’s the baby girl out of a family of six) crowded two-bedroom apartment where they would literally have to dodge bullets at night and walk en masse to the bodega for safety.
Soon there after Krissy Krissy discovered that she was becoming a woman and that undergoing the growing pains of love and self acceptance was necessary for her to finally break-free from it all [the stereotypes, the guilt, and public opinion]. It was Krissy’s strong will and strong connection with her dad that led her to channel her true musicianship and develop her now famously trendy bohemian east village signature style.
Your path toward becoming a musician sounds very powerful and transformative. Are there any surprising experiences that you had along the way?
Everyday there is something new and surprising. I never thought that I would be found in a karaoke bar. That in itself was a surprise. My father passed away in the midst of creating my EP. That was devastating and the most surprising to me. Changed my life forever. Surprises can be scary and great. I think I’m ready for more.
After years of singing, you have recently received a great deal of recognition in a short period of time. What has that been like?
It’s been amazing. I have an amazing team and an awesome manager who won’t stop until……. (that means he won’t stop). I’m super grateful for all that has come. It does come as a shock because this industry is very difficult. I see all the accomplishments and all that is lined up for the coming months and I stand in awe. I pinch myself often. It’s a Dream come true and a reality check to keep working.
Your song “Above All” is influenced by your relationship with your father, and other songs such as “Suspicious” stem from personal experiences. What is it like writing, recording and performing such confessional songs?
When it comes to performing “Suspicious,” I tend to make light of the situation. Being cheated on sucks, but being able to have a good time in a shitty situation makes it all better.
When it comes to “Above All,” it’s the most difficult song to get through. It defiantly brings me back to that moment when I let my dad hear the song. See, he couldn’t do much. He was very very very sick. I needed to express to him how much he meant to me. So I finished the song and ran to his bedside in the hospital and I placed my headphones on him and let him listen. I waited for a response. He opened his eyes, blinked and smiled. I knew he understood my message. One week later, my dad passed away. Every time I hear those first 2 notes, my mind races to that memory and my heart is filled with both happiness and sadness. Makes me think of him and only him and miss him tremendously. It’s hard to get through that song.
Which artists were influential as you were becoming a musician?
I listened to a lot of Melissa Etheridge, Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey. Those women are amazing. I learned so much from just listening to their voices and mimicking them. I was raised in the church so I listened to a lot of Mary Mary, Fred Hammond, Kirk Franklin, Brooklyn Tabernacle Choirs, Calvin Hunt, and a bunch of other gospel artists. These artists have perfect vocals. They taught me a lot and they don’t even know it.
Your music has been described as pop/rock. How do you characterize your songs stylistically?
Dope!! I would say DOPE! See, Dope is a word that translates to “all things great.” Feel me? I want to create music like The Beatles. Endless amazing songs that just don’t last for the season, but last for a reason. That reason being that its good. Yeah I’m considered pop/rock but I want it to really be genre-less/feel good music.
“Maybe I” has a somewhat different sound than other songs on your EP. What was it like creating that track?
It was an experience. I related to the track so It became personal and heartfelt.
How does your identity as a woman affect your music? How has living in Brooklyn been influential?
I don’t think it does. I believe that music is a freedom for both men and woman. Anyone can relate this EP. People have been through break ups and all the ups and downs of that to death. We all are human, and go through the same thing. Make sense?
Living in Brooklyn is awesome. I’ve been there my whole life. I’ve seen the ups and downs to my neighborhood. Everyone knew us because everyone knew my pop. Brooklyn has become a part of me. From the accent (which I don’t hear) to the style. I love being Brooklyn. My part of Brooklyn.
In what ways is your art feminist?
I think how I carry myself and present myself as an equal allows me to be a voice for the female community. I stand before men and woman just as i am and fight to keep my dream alive and its working. I think woman who are your modern-day misfit will follow through this lane I’m creating.
When you perform, how do you perceive the relationship between yourself and the audience?
I feel that the audience aka MY BUDDIES come along on this musical journey I present to them. I’m open and honest with my experiences and like I said before, I sing with all those feelings. I believe they see my heart and join in with me.
What projects are you working on currently?
I am getting ready to go on tour with “Hunter Valentine” and “Girl in a Coma” starting in September. I am working on my full length album and setting up other tours as well.
What advice do you have for aspiring musicians?
Stay positive and keep working. Every thing you do is preparing you for that perfect opportunity. I believe in this one quote so much that I tattooed it on me. It says, “when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” That’s the truth. Believe it!
-Strike & SEM